Brittany Maynard's Use Of Physician-Assisted Suicide

Better Essays

When death is brought into conversation, most might think of the elderly peacefully passing away in the night or the opposite with horrific accidents where an individual cannot be saved, but very little do people consider individuals who make the choice to end it all. As all should know, this act is called suicide and most have a negative perception of it. But what if it is for the greater good? In one of many cases, California native, Brittany Maynard, made the decision to end her life after suffering through the pain of debilitating headaches caused by brain cancer. Maynard received help in her departure through the use of physician-assisted suicide. The acceptance of this procedure is very limited seeing as though it is only legal in a …show more content…

Oregon. According to Daniel E. Brannon and his article “Gonzales v. Oregon (2006)”, this case was brought to attention thirty-one years after the United States had passed the Controlled Substance Act of 1970 when “the U.S. attorney general attempted to issue an interpretation...which would would prevent physicians from administering the drugs necessary for the assisted suicide process” (2011). The attorney general, John Ashcroft, deemed physician-assisted suicide as an illegitimate medical practice and any doctor who practiced it “would have their license revoked” (Brannon, 2011). Often, the act is seen as illegitimate because people believe that it is unethical to end one's own life. In cases like murder, it extremely wrong because the dying person had no consent, but when the patient gives consent and has the ultimate power in taking the medication, they should have the right to proceed.
In an individual’s decision to apply for physician-assisted suicide, the reasons for which they provide are most likely related to diseases they have or are developing. In Maynard’s case, she had developed brain cancer and in researching cures, found that the effects would leave her “quality of life...gone” (Maynard, 2014). The treatment called for full brain radiation which would have left

Get Access